Horror thriller is the most pulsating genre of fiction. Most popular too, but rarely authors do complete justice to it. Some horror thrillers are so cliched that you’d rather snuggle up with a YA novel. But there are a few horror thrillers that are really terrific. They chill your spine, give you goosebumps, and shake you up. Maya’s New Husband by Neil D’Silva is one such. Right from the word go, there is no one dull moment in the book. Every chapter is a cliffhanger and you’d be left wondering what’s in store in the next chapter.
The story has strong and powerful characters. Maya Bhargava as the lead protagonist shines throughout the book. Her character as a Biology teacher complements the male protagonist’s cannibalistic character. The first few chapters of the book are really engrossing that they make the book unputdownable. I was even reading it at my workplace (thank God I had the Kindle app in my phone and I wasn’t caught reading a novel during office hours). All the other characters of the book too had ample scope and they were crucial in taking the story forward. I loved how Neil chose a mythical theme and wove a nail-biting horror plot around it. Some scenes were downright gory, that I had to stop reading and inhale fresh air. Mind you, if you’re weak-hearted, you’d never finish the book.
Neil’s powerful wordplay was one of the strongest points of the story. The grisly scenes were intelligently covered up with the choice of words. I also loved the idea of parallel plots – that of the cannibal’s macabre adventures and the seemingly normal love story of Maya and Bhaskar. But even the love story had an element of suspense to it. You wouldn’t want Maya to fall in love with Bhaskar, but that’s what eventually happens and you can never stop reading after that.
The flashback of the cannibal was the only dragging part of the story. Neil could have chopped off a few scenes and made it crispier. Nevertheless, it was engaging, too. It presented a deep character analysis of how an ordinary human being transforms into someone gruesome. There were some predictable scenes, but they can be easily overlooked.
With an open ended climax, Neil makes his readers wait for the sequel. Maya’s New Husband is what we call as pure horror thriller and I’d surely recommend this book to lovers of this genre.
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